Had the Detroit Lions managed to upset the New Orleans Saints on Saturday, they would have likely been shorthanded at a few positions going into the divisional round of the playoffs. The Lions went into Saturday's game as healthy as ever, but three starters suffered or reaggravated injuries during the course of the game.
The most noteworthy injury happened to offensive tackle Jeff Backus. His streak of consecutive starts likely would have come to an end had the Lions advanced to face the Green Bay Packers, because he suffered a bicep tear during the game.
"I knew right away what happened," said Backus, who missed the majority of the preseason with a torn pectoral muscle suffered during the offseason. "I went off to the sidelines to evaluate how bad it was and, honestly, I didn't feel like I could do my job.
"I can't help the team if I'm out there not helping the team."
Considering Backus is set to become a free agent, it will be interesting to see if this injury affects the Lions' plans at left tackle at all. Obviously there is plenty of time for Backus to recover, but it's never good for a player at his age to go into free agency with an injury.
The other injuries on Saturday involved defensive players. Specifically, cornerback Chris Houston hurt his left shoulder and linebacker DeAndre Levy dealt with a "muscle thing" in one of his legs. Houston was able to return after suffering what he called a mild dislocation, but he wasn't able to play in all situations. As for Levy, he said he will be fine, but he was on crutches after the game as a result of the injury, which apparently first popped up in Week 17.